Wednesday, March 14, 2007

The Media Wants To Destroy You

I think it would be funny if the KKK were to complain about media bias in their quest to protect 'white identity'. You know the drill on those folks. Their strategy is to mainly dehumanize black folks with clever language, accuse any white people who aren't on their team is being part of the black conspiracy, make parents worry about their kids, and preach a "we don't hate them, we just don't agree with them" line in order to seem moderate and rational, while hate - no matter how tempered in reason - is still hate. Check it:

"Stand with us Brothers and Sisters. Together we will overcome the forces that are trying to take our country away from us. NOW IS THE TIME!!!!!!!!!" (North Carolina White Knights)

"Just because a person is black or another race doesn't make them bad people. But you should always be careful where you go and who your friends are. Young girls should be extra careful. Many black boys feel extra cool if they hurt a white girl. Some kids don't learn until its [sic] too late." (Just for Kids Page, Knights of the KKK.)

Now imagine them complaining about a media conspiracy against them. It gets everybody riled up. Pretty funny, right? We'd all get a laugh out of that, regardless of poltical affiliations, right? We don't get that humor, because the Klan has been long silenced - forced underground. Oh they're still here and all - but they're not quite what they once were. So we won't get to hear about the African American Media Conspiracy.

Pitt that. But, if you want to hear hate mongers preaching about how the entire media is against them, you need only turn to Daniel T. Zanoza over at the Illinois Family Institute

Currently, state Rep. Greg Harris (D-Chicago), who is openly homosexual and HIV positive, has sponsored a bill titled the "Religious Freedom and Marriage Fairness Act" which would legalize "marriage" between same-sex couples. However, the press has not been as critical of this proposed legislation as they were of the PMI initiative -- which would only have appeared as a non-binding referendum on the ballot if the courts had not interceded.

Also, Illinois already has a Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which confirms the will of Illinois residents. If there were any initiative or bill which should be challenged by the dominant media, it is Harris' proposed legislation, because it attempts to supersede the will of the public. Individuals like Harris, and those who support his bill, have been successful primarily with the backing of activist judges and a liberal press. These individuals believe they have a lock on the meaning of social justice and equality. Therefore, they use any means possible to obtain their goal.

Harris himself says the public needs to be re-educated concerning the issue of "marriage." These words are sinister. Just how does Rep. Harris plan to re-educate Illinois residents? Will he and those who share his views use the state's educational system to create a new moral paradigm? That question has been answered many times over. The horror stories about children being exposed to explicit sexual information about the homosexual lifestyle are incalculable. And, with the media on Mr. Harris' side, you may one day have your children telling you that the "marriage" of two women or two men is a positive thing for our society.

Of course, by that time, they might be considering bills that will permit the "marriage" of two men and one woman; or a father and his daughter. Let your imagination run wild because only twenty years ago, what Rep. Harris has planned for our state would have been viewed as an obscene nightmarish prediction of the future.

A few things worth a note before I get into the point:
1. Note the dehumanizing rhetoric. They'll do everything they can to not address queer folks as being actual people.
2. Take notice of the inflation of "will of the people" on the PMI DOMA idea. It wasn't just court intercession - everybody in the know is aware that PMI went to immigrant communities to take advantage of people who don't speak English to get them to sign the petition.
3. Buzzphrase on HIV. Fair game and worth mentioning otherwise. Contextually on the IFI site - definitely an anti-gay dog whistle.

One of the ways the IFI can keep their supporters in the dark ages is by keeping them away from anything that might otherwise open their mind to the possibility that maybe queer folks are actually human beings by essentially attributing anything contrary to the IFI stance as part of a conspiracy to 'normalize' the LGBT community. It's a way of insulating people against things that would change their minds.

It's like this. For 50+ years the LGBT community has been an elephant in the room. Save for a few examples of high profile instants like Stonewall, there was very little public acknowledgment that a sizable portion of the population existed. Call it boomer era conservatism, call it locked doors thinking - whatever. Fact is, 40 years ago if a girl got pregnant before she got married she was sent off to the Dormitory For Lost Girls run by Sister Mary Holywater. If your wife had a baby that had cerebral palsy, the kid would be locked in the basement and rarely spoken of. If your brother happened to be gay, he'd be the black sheep.

Like a lot of our previous assbackwards social conventions are starting to get recognized as being assbackwards, popular media is starting to recognize and engage the fact that everybody knows somebody who's queer and the results you can view while watching shows like Will and Grace or The Sopranos. The media is not serving as a catalyst for change in society, it's serving as a reflection of change in society.

And if you accept the PMI/IFI premise that the majority of the population is anti-gay, then why do these shows do so well? Could it be a reflection that everybody is starting to grasp that queer fear is just one of those old social conventions with little relevance today?

So to offset the fact that people in the United States are getting away from these social standards that have been proven wrong, immoral, and intolerant time and time again - they drum up chump conspiracy theories to suggest that the rest of the United States isn't actually swinging in a socially accepting direction, rather they're the victims of a vast media conspiracy not only to 'normalize sexual deviance', but towards a bizarre end conclusion of 'father's marrying their daughters'.

It's important for these sort of Christian extremists to maintain this insulation between reality and paranoid fantasy, because without it Smith's target audience runs the risk of opening their eyes to the real world around them. And they have to sow a lot of fear into people who support them. Consider the last statement:

Let your imagination run wild because only twenty years ago, what Rep. Harris has planned for our state would have been viewed as an obscene nightmarish prediction of the future.

It's the rough equivalent of telling little kids to keep their eyes closed so the boogey man can't get to them.

SCAM notes the clear intellectual imbalance between Zorn's anti-gay commenters and pro-gay commenters which is exactly why people involved in IFI succeed: the hate tempered in reason, pseudo-intellectualism, psuedo-science, paranoia really only works on those that are not intellectually capable of reaching the very obvious conclusion that there is no threat to anyone from LGBT folks. Rather the only threat is to hucksters like Smith whom, once ultimately proved wrong, will lose their cushy 85,000 dollar a year salaries and be vanquished to irrelevance just like their bizarre antiquated ideology.


John Dagenac,  1:23 AM  

I went on the website. There are some wierd approaches there.

However, having spiritual based reasons for not agreeing with homosexual acts (not necessarily orientation per se) is not the same as being in the KKK. While I can agree that SOME of the conservative right have hate and a wrong approach THAT DOES NOT MEAN that every social conservative or traditional religious person is a hate filled person nor that there reasons for not agreeing with gay marriage are akin to violent hate groups.

It is too late, and I am not sure you want to discuss the broader issue, as it seems that you think that gay marriage is a civil right--period--and anyone who disagrees is the equivalent of the KKK. I think it is more complicated and nuanced than that.

I struggle with these issues (from a public policy level) and certainly am disturbed by extremists on both sides. However, I have a so called traditional view of religion and my spiritual approach has limits on human sexuality which include prohibitions on homosexuality. I am not convinced of the science that absolutely homosexuality is a genetic trait (although I do not deny the possibility)--or that environmental or other factors come into play. If marriage by definition is male and female than it is not necessarily granting equal rights but changing the definition. Not being full in support of gay marriage, an issue that does not have a full consensus in our nation, nor is it completely clear from a scientific and objective point of view.

You seem very disrespectful and dismissive of people of faith and their values and their legitimate role in discourse in our society.
The issue is not as clear as you make it. Most religious people are not the bigots you make them out to be.

Dan L 7:15 AM  

It is too late, and I am not sure you want to discuss the broader issue, as it seems that you think that gay marriage is a civil right--period--and anyone who disagrees is the equivalent of the KKK. I think it is more complicated and nuanced than that.

1. No. That's not what I said. What I said was that the rhetoric patterns by both are shockingly similar. The paranoia, the dehumanizing, and the faux science all together are the same. Take any piece of KKK speech and replace "black person" (or Jewish person, for that matter) or any derivative there of with "homosexual" or any derivative there of and you have a perfect match. Would you like to dispute that now that I've clarified it?

Furthermore, before you begin defending this nasty little organization, I would strongly urge you to consider some of their individual reputations when it comes to public policy.

Dr. Mike Campion, a practicing psychologist and former IFI board member, lost 2 contracts (Springfield, Minneapolis) for findings that were dubbed by both places as racist, anti-gay, and otherwise kooky.

2. J. Matt Barber -former IFI advisor, columnist, now concerned women for America 'culture and policy institute' director, who was a stumbling oaf in Middle management at allstate who was fired for being such a heavily anti-gay bigot when publishing his bizarre articles in fringe right wing publications.

3. Bruce Ticknell - ifi board member, who's only notable accomplishment is leading a charge about the queer folks trying to ramrod their rock solid, throbbing homosexual agenda down his kid's throat by showing them a play about one of the nastiest hate crimes in human history.

So John, let's agree here and move on. You're a reasonable guy. At this point, you must get that these guys are a hate organization and we can agree that hate organization spew is inherently irrational and incorrect. Right?

If you want to maintain spiritual objections to LGBT folks, that's fine. Be my guest. Don't want gay folks to get married in your church? Fine. Going to sit in the break room at work and refuse to acknowledge some poor guy who's getting married simply because he's gay and your god doesn't agree with it? That's fine too. If church's started being told by any governmental apparatus that they were expected to marry GLBT folks by law, I would argue just as vigorously against the notion of governments defining faith, just as I am now where the faithful are defining policy.

Just as I see no compelling reason to say that Catholic churches should be expected to marry a protestant and a muslim based on tenants of faith, I see no particular reason why a church would ever to be expected to marry LGBT couples.

But I'll entertain you from a matter of public policy, but not from a perspective on faith.

1. What clear societal harm comes from queer folks getting married?

2. I'll accept, for the very narrow purposes of this discussion, your assertion a legal definition of marriage as being between a man and a woman and that legalizing SSM would require a change to the language of the law. What discernible societal harm comes of that change? And since when was the law drafted

3. Consider for a moment that one of the major reasons that the gay rights movement has taken up a great deal of validity with people like me, is that when a couple who are functionally married - they then have legal rights in terms of
a. property ownership
b. power of attorney when a spouse is sick.
c. ability to see a dying spouse.
d. tax filing rights

Now when people talk about 'equal rights', it's not just a definition of marriage, it's an entire level of legal privileged that goes along with the concept of being married. Do you believe, that people in a relationship as committed as your own, should not be provided these rights simply based on a morality call of 1 religious group? Do you consider that fair?

Pat Hickey 8:17 AM  

Thanks to the 'gottcha' interview with General Pace, CJCOS, the dilly-birds are flocking and cawing.

1. The General supports policy - he's a soldier
2. He was asked his views concerning what undlies that policy

The Chicago Tribune editors and reporters hauled in PR nightmare for the Pentagon.

The only one's who care about the man's views are those who wrap themselves in the Bill of Rights and are the first ones to act against the very principles of liberty. The politicians are cashing in on the General's openness to the Tribune - scout the territory General.

Now, the Gay Haters and the Looney Tunes who support anything that undermines faith in anything have their hobby horses for a couple of weeks and the Tribune keeps its dirty nose above the waters -for a little while.

Bill Baar 12:57 PM  

It's not Gen Pace's grade to change Don't Ask, Don't Tell. It's law per Act of Congress. If Congress doesn't like it, they can change it.

As for Gen Pace, so far, the only Senator to disagree has been Warner. Clinton and Illinois's Obama, waffle around a bit on issue where a Good Marine like Pace would undoubtly do his duty should Congress figure out what to do.

That gets into the morality of no guts... something Pace has aplenty and most of our Senators lack glaringly... regardless of their thoughts on sexual ethics.

Anonymous,  6:33 PM  

Put Greens in elected office and they will actually have the spine to legalize gay marriage.

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